Don’t Let Your Donors Give and Go: 5 Ways to Use Social Media to Increase Donations

by: Smith and Howard

December 17, 2015

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Your nonprofit organization can and should benefit from leveraging your social media accounts. Social media can help increase brand awareness, donor interaction, charitable giving and much more. Think about it: the visual real estate on social media platforms is endless and if used the right way, your nonprofit can increase brand perception in a meaningful and measurable way. It can also contribute to recurring donations – when donors see how their money is being used, they are more apt to continue to donate.

Here are five ways to begin now:

1. Social Media Calendar

For some organizations, social media can quickly become a low priority, especially when resources are limited. Creating a social media calendar will make your social media planning easier. If your organization is unable to dedicate one staff member to handle social media, then a social media calendar could become your best friend. There are many social media content calendars that can save you hours and it is up to you to decide what works best in your work environment.  At Smith and Howard we maintain two content calendars, one is for articles for the web site and the other is for all social media posts. The two calendars play off of each other, but remain separate. The content you push out on social media should be scheduled in advance (we plan content one quarter in advance and schedule the posts about a month in advance) and can include posts that cover such things as corporate/donor sponsorships and partnerships, events, donor activity, organization success stories, staff anniversaries, campaigns, links to articles on the organization website, etc. Once your calendar is full of posts, go ahead and schedule your tweets, posts and articles for the upcoming month.

2. Tweet About It

When people donate, tweet about it. The number of adults using Twitter might surprise you. According to the Pew Research Center nearly two-thirds of U.S. adults turn to Twitter to get news updates. Take advantage of this trend and engage your audience.  As a nonprofit, interact with your donors on Twitter by tagging the individual (if you have their permission) or the company. In your tweet make sure to link your audience to your organization’s donation landing page, which will let them know how their donations are making a difference. Interacting with your audience can help build donor loyalty.

3. Tell Your Story…on Facebook

Donors like to see where their money is going. Facebook is the ideal platform for you to publish stories and photos about how charitable contributions are making a difference. This is the platform to show compelling imagery (and make sure this imagery is on your donation form). Publish relevant stories that show how many lives have been touched by the organization’s efforts. These types of stories will have people expressing themselves through comments, likes and shares of your post.  Story-telling can generate donations, especially when the cause is near and dear to the donor. 

4. Create Social Media Campaigns

A good time to test a social media campaign is now. Campaigns must be measurable, so conduct research on your donors and set realistic objectives before doing anything else. The holiday season is the time that people open their hearts and wallets. This is also the time companies set their budgets for the upcoming year.  Share your campaign(s) on all social media platforms and know that you can boost or promote your posts on Facebook, which will help extend your reach to fans, friends and followers.

5. Inform donors about news and events

This can be your “social proof” and Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn are perfect for this. Show your donors how they can become involved. Promote company news and events on all social media platforms and link your audience to the appropriate landing page on your website. However, you might want to target and socialize with a particular audience and LinkedIn can help. If you haven’t already, look in to the LinkedIn Events feature. With a few clicks you can connect with potential donors.

Our next article in this series will address Instagram, LinkedIn and more detail on creating a social media calendar! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Julie Barnes or Nancy Hogan at 404-874-6244. 

How can we help?

If you have any questions and would like to connect with a team member please call 404-874-6244 or contact an advisor below.